JOIN ME IN AN INTERVIEW WITH JILLIAN MICHELLE FROM ATLANTA, GEORGIA !
Jillian Michelle blogs about nerdy and geeky-themed travel at Adventure Dragon. Her blog features the adventures of a tiny kitten who wears a dragon disguise and calls himself Dragon—a character of her own design and the mascot of her site. Since illness prevents her from traveling outside her local area, she created the little guy to help her fulfill her dreams of adventure. She wanted a mascot that could symbolize her own ambitions and struggles in life, so it was important for him to be small and frail while simultaneously projecting strength and resilience. That’s the reason for his disguise. He’s just a little kitten, but he believes he’s a dragon. Dragon travels the world with family, friends, and other bloggers and then sends Jillian photos of all the amazing places he visits. He especially loves castles, waterfalls, ancient places, and other nerdy adventures.
Which is the best month to visit Atlanta and why?
Summers in Atlanta are way too hot and humid to go outside, so stay away during that time. Most of the people I know stay indoors all summer with their air conditioning cranked up to full blast. The heat here is just miserable. Fall and spring are both great times to visit because it’s still warm enough to enjoy the outdoors but not so
hot that you feel like your body is cooking each time you step outside. During spring, you’ll find soft pink cherry blossom trees scattered throughout the city, and the red and golden colors of fall make the mountains an especially stunning place for day trips or
hikes. Visit at the end of September, October, April, or May.
Which is the most convenient and favoured transport of Atlanta?
Traffic in Atlanta is especially horrendous, so if you visit downtown, the subway system—called MARTA—will be the quickest and most convenient mode of transportation. It’s not uncommon to spend an hour in your car waiting to drive just ten miles down the road, but the trains allow you to bypass all that traffic. If you want to head to the suburbs of Atlanta or outside the city limits, however, a car will be much faster. MARTA runs outside the city, but its routes aren’t as extensively developed there, so riding the train or bus can take twice as long to get you to your destination as a car would. You don’t want to spend half your day sitting on buses, so renting a car is a better
option in that case.
Which are the top 3 must visit places in Atlanta?
Spend an afternoon strolling through Piedmont Park and then conclude your day by watching the sunset over the skyscrapers. The park offers one of the prettiest views of Atlanta’s skyline.
Little 5 Points is one of the quirkiest and most eclectic spots in the city, and it’s famous for all its independently owned shops and artsy stores. You absolutely must eat at the Vortex while you’re there. The building looks like a giant skull, so you can’t miss it!
I also recommend visiting one of the museums in Midtown. There’s honestly so many great things to do in my city, though, so it’s hard to pick just three. Hopefully your visit will include multiple days in Atlanta so that you’ll have plenty of time to see even more of our fun attractions.
What are the best day trips from Atlanta ?
You definitely have to see Helen, Georgia! It’s a tiny, Bavarian-style mountain village about an hour and a half north of Atlanta at the foot of the Blue Ridge Mountains. It’s known for its unique architecture and charming shops, and despite having just 430
residents, it’s the third most visited city in the state of Georgia. The village is small enough that you can walk through it yourself, so you definitely don’t need a tour.
You also should plan a day-trip to Rock City Gardens in Lookout Mountain, Georgia. It’s my favorite place in the entire state and features one of the most beautiful waterfalls I’ve ever seen. You can even see seven states from the viewing platform at the top of the mountain.
Which is the most celebrated holiday in Atlanta?
Christmas is our biggest holiday. For some, it’s a religious celebration. For others, it’s just a big reason to spend time with family and let your loved ones know that you care about them. Atlanta hosts many Christmas-themed events, and I especially love attending them to see all the pretty buildings decorated in sparkling lights.
Which is the most happening area in Atlanta and why?
Atlanta is full of so many different neighborhoods, and each has its own distinctive type of personality, so it’s hard to label one area as more happening than the others. If you’re looking for unique but outstanding restaurants, then I highly recommend you visit the
Vortex in Little 5 Points. Their whiskey-pimiento cheeseburger is my favorite! I also really love the bar called Battle and Brew. Fans of the Doctor Who TV show will especially enjoy it because they have a TARDIS inside.
Is Atlanta a vegetarian friendly city? Where can one find amazing street food in your city? Is there any dish one should try in particular ?
Atlanta is such a diverse city, so there’s more types of food than you could ever imagine. We have vegan restaurants and even gluten- free restaurants.
We have Greek, Indian, German, French, Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Thai, Mexican, Ethiopian, Moroccan, Polish, and so many other types of food. You absolutely must visit Buford Highway. It’s known for its international cuisine, markets, and grocery stores.
If you drive a few more miles north, you’ll reach one of my favorite places—Duluth—which is considered Atlanta’s Korea-town. Try some authentic Korean barbecue while you’re there, and then head to a Korean bakery to taste sweet breads stuffed with red beans or custard.
Where to head for affordable shopping?
For luxury shopping, head to Lenox Square in Buckhead. For affordable shopping, head to Little 5 Points or Atlantic Station. You can find lots of locally-made crafts in Little 5 Points, Candler Park, Inman Park, the Old Fourth Ward, and Decatur.
Would you recommend any popular local apps to tourists for transport, food and hidden gems in Atlanta?
I don’t use any apps, but I have friends who like to check Yelp for food recommendations and reviews. Waze is also a really good app for GPS and finding your way around the city. Many locals here prefer it to Google Maps.